After twice tweaking fans with behind-the-scenes footage, Stargate Command has finally released a teaser trailer that hints at what will happen in the series when it premieres on Feb. 15, 2018.
While it is difficult to piece together what might happen, we do see Catherine Langford (Ellie Gall) in the clutches of Nazi Germany’s dreaded SS; lots of guns and running; constellations (stargate addresses?), notably Orion, scrawled in a notebook; Egyptian-style architecture — and a stargate chevron locking on the symbol for Earth.
Stargate: Origins, the new web-only series that reveals the untold story of Catherine Langford’s early adventures with the alien artifact, will premiere on the Stargate Command streaming service on Feb. 15, 2018.
The first two episodes (running about 10 minutes each) will be free to stream. while the remaining eight live-action installments will be exclusive to Stargate Command members.
A new teaser for the digital series, which we now know will be set in the World War II era, will drop tomorrow, Dec. 20.
The series, which recently wrapped production, has previously released two behind-the-scenes video clips (see the first one here), but nothing storyline related.
Stargate: Origins stars Ellie Gall as Catherine Langford, Connor Trinneer as Professor Langford, Philp Alexander as Beal and Shvan Aladdin as Wasif.
Production has wrapped on Stargate: Origins, the 10-episode web-only series that will serve as a prequel to the 1994 movie, the three live-action TV series, two direct-to-video movies and several comic book series. (We do not speak of the non-canon, short-lived animated series. Or the five non-canon novels.)
The new show focuses on Catherine Langford (Ellie Gall), whose father, Professor Langford (Connor Trineer, STAR TREK: ENTERPRISE; STARGATE: ATLANTIS) uncovers the stargate in Egypt in 1928. However, no one understands what it is. Presumably this series will explain how Catherine gets the idea that the giant metal ring is supposed to do something.
STARGATE: ORIGINS is still some months away from its debut, but the first official set photos have been released, and Nerdist has shared the exclusive images with fans.
The 10-episode digital-only series will be a prequel to the 1994 theatrical film, the three TV series and handful of direct-to-DVD movies. Ellie Gall stars as Catherine Langford, the daughter of Professor Langford, played by Connor Trinneer (STAR TREK: ENTERPRISE). They are joined by new characters Beal (Philp Alexander) and Wasif (Shvan Aladdin). Also seen in the photos is series director Mercedes Bryce Morgan.
Mercedes Bryce Morgan
Beal, Wasif, Catherine
Mercedes Bryce Morgan
One of my very favorite science-fiction franchises, Stargate, has been sidelined for about seven years or so, but it’s coming back! STARGATE ORIGINS, a new live-action digital-only series, as announced at San Diego Comic-Con!
Based on the 1994 movie Stargate (1994), which starred Kurt Russell and James Spader, ORIGINS will follow Catherine Langford, the daughter of Professor Paul Langford, the scientist who uncovered the stargate in Giza in 1928, when she was just a little girl.
Produced by and for Stargatecommand.co, SO will consist of ten 10-minute episodes written by Mark Ilvedson and Justin Michael Terry and directed by Mercedes Bryce Morgan. Production will begin in August for a fall debut exclusively on stargatecommand.co, a joint effort by MGM’s Digital Group and the studio New Form.
Take a look at the mini teaser (consisting solely of footage from the movie) that accompanied the announcement:
SO will be not unlike STAR TREK: DISCOVERY — a digital continuation of a beloved sci-fi series that anchors a new streaming service.
With each successive episode of STARGATE UNIVERSE, I like the abrasive characters more and more.
This week’s episode gave us a closer look at perhaps the most abrasive, Dr. Nicholas Rush, who appears to be a literal mad scientist. Robert Carlyle is best known on U.S. shores for starring in The Full Monty, but I last saw him in the horror sequel 28 Weeks Later, in which he also played a character that was difficult to like. But nothing like Dr. Rush. While the rest of the crew stranded on Destiny tried to joke about their terrible predicament – witness the cracks about Eli’s and Scott’s personal hygiene – Rush was rushing about, snapping at people. He even threw Riley up against a wall for daring to “interrupt” his work. Col. Young is willing to try to work with Rush, but Rush acts like every word he is forced to share with someone else costs him in blood or life-force. Rush recognized the cascading power failures are a dire threat, but he could not be bothered to explain it to the others, who thought the blackouts were just annoying. Rush thinks that if no one else can understand the scope of a problem, they should at least accept his assessment without question. After all, if the great Dr. Nicholas Rush thinks it’s important, then it is important. Volker, the astrophysicist, tried to help, but Rush shouted him down and belittled him like a child. I think the key to Rush was encapsulated in his rant to Young, in which he charged: “It was your reckless, pointless attempt to dial Earth that robbed me of the time I needed to solve this problem!” There it is: Rush is personally offended by all the others acting as if they might save the day. This should be his moment. After all, as he also pointed out, “I’m the only qualified person!” But then he passed out due to the combination of stress and caffeine/nicotine withdrawal, so… so much for that super brain. What a guy!
For me, it’s a toss-up between Rush and MIT-dropout Eli (more on him later) for favorite-character honors.
Lots of air and sand
Well, nobody came down with a case of the warm fuzzies for the third part of STARGATE UNIVERSE’s initial story, “Air.” Everyone still barely tolerates everyone else – at best. To me, this dynamic worked even better this week, because it was believable that nerves would be frayed as the breathable atmosphere was consumed. There was not much support for pulling together for the greater good, and making their last breaths meaningful or noble. Newly sown grudges were maintained, and the appearance of Col. Telford simply added more fuel to the fire.
While Rush and Scott led an expedition to an unknown planet looking for lime to repair the air scrubbers, the rest of the crew remained aboard Destiny and squabbled about what to do. From Earth, Telford and Dr. Mehta switched bodies with Col. Young and Chloe, so Chloe could to tell her mother about her father’s death and Young could report to Gen. O’Neill. Telford used the switch to inspect Destiny. Or rather, try to. Telford was shocked to find Young’s body badly wounded, yet he insisted on pushing the injured body to extremes while stalking about the ship, tearing the trapped crew new ones. What a jerk! I know Telford feels guilty because he was supposed to lead the team through the gate to the ninth chevron location, but he should have vacated Young’s body and switched with someone else. (On another note, maybe the crew lucked out that the taskmaster didn’t get to make the trip!) Props to Lou Diamond Phillips for playing unsympathetic. Bravo to TJ for sedating Telford! And I have to take one tiny issue with Jack’s assertion that no one is “qualified” to go through the gate; as I recall, O’Neill was selected for the original (suicide) mission because he felt he had nothing left to live for after the death of his son. That’s a sort of qualification (although, technically, not specifically for stargate travel. But I digress…).
STARGATE UNIVERSE is the third television series to spin off from the movie Stargate. It concerns a mismatched group of explorers, soldiers and civilians trapped aboard an Ancient vessel billions of light years away from Earth with no way of returning home. What sets this series apart is its darker tone, younger cast, and much more kinetic feel. The characters barely know each other let alone like each other, and spend a lot of time in the opening story hurling accusations and blame for their dire circumstances. The whole thing feels like a mash-up of STARGATE: ATLANTIS and LOST IN SPACE, with maybe a little STAR TREK: VOYAGER (but let’s hope not much).
Kicking off a new series with edgy characters who bicker endlessly is a risky gambit to attract viewers, but my hat is off to the-powers-that-be for not serving up a simple retread. Diehard STARGATE fans will need to get used to this status quo, but there’s a chance that newcomers to the franchise will be intrigued. The gloomy lighting and quick-cut editing make the series feel more action-packed than it actually is. The premiere opened with a mad scramble through a stargate as the characters fled an alien assault with no idea where they were landing. The group was not designated to venture off-world, and thus are ill-suited to be stranded aboard an alien starship. For instance, there is no doctor, only a flustered medic (Alaina Huffman, who played Black Canary on SMALLVILLE). The expedition’s top scientist and self-proclaimed leader, Dr. Nicholas Rush (Robert Carlyle), has absolutely no people skills whatsoever. (Picture Dr. McKay without the personal magnetism.) Despite his discomfort with others, Rush repeatedly stresses the need for him to be the leader, while seeming dumbfounded as to why his tremendous intellect has not cowed the Ancient starship into returning them home. The frosty Rush is counterbalanced by the appealing civilian consultant Eli Wallace. Normally, I despise the “boy genius” archetype, but David Blue works overtime to make sure his character doesn’t come across as an insufferable Wesley Crusher-type. The mostly-youthful cast feels like a transparent attempt to appeal to a younger demographic, but SG-1’s Richard Dean Anderson, Amanda Tapping and Michael Shanks hitch a ride to ease the transition for veteran viewers. Lieutenant Scott (Brian J. Smith) seems too baby-faced to lead the military contingent, so it’s a good thing that Colonel Young (Louis Ferreira) survived to take over as the no-nonsense father figure. It remains to be seen who will fill the matriarch role, although my money is on Ming Na‘s IOA rep, Camille Wray. Poor Ming had no real role in the premiere, but I’m sure this will be remedied when it makes more sense for her character to step forward. (BTW, want proof SGU is still courting its core audience of SF geeks? Here it is: Chloe (Elyse Levesque), the politician’s hot daughter, actually talks to husky “math boy” Eli!)
Despite being a roomy two hours long, the premiere suffered from the usual pilot-itis: It sketched in a multitude of characters but spent more time establishing their situation and piling up problems. The most immediate of those problems was finding enough breathable air to avoid dying before they can strangle each other. Do audiences want to watch 20 episodes of a bunch of strangers arguing with each other? Realistically, no, so I’m sure the survivors will jell eventually – and the huge crowd of people aboard promise lots of red shirts to make the stakes seem high each week. The Ancients’ ship is called Destiny; let’s hope SGU doesn’t sink under the burden of its own density.